Valentine’s Day is fast approaching. Here are some book titles for youth that spread the message of love and caring that Valentine’s Day celebrates.
Stay, Little Seed by Cristiana Valentini, illustrated by Philip Giordano
Stay, Little Seed is a deceptively simple, profound little book that explores the binding love that parents feel for their children. In the book, there’s a place called Who Knows Where. This is the place where all the little seeds go to when the wind blows through the trees. But one day, a tiny seed decides to remain on its branch even when the wind blows. At first, the tree feels the seed should leave because if it doesn’t, how will it grow roots of its own? At the same time, the tree also feels lonely and is glad for the company of the tiny seed, besides no one knows how Who Knows Where really is. Through this metaphorical take of a tree and its seed, the book celebrates the rhythms of the natural world while also telling a deeply moving story of love, fear, and the courage of letting go. Grades Preschool-2
This Is Not a Valentine by Carter Higgins, illustrated by Lucy Ruth Cummins
Formal declarations of love are for the grownups, but for the little ones, they express their love by doing things not considered typical of a Valentine. In the book, a boy mulls over the perfect gift to give to his friend-who-is-a-girl (not a girlfriend!). He thinks about typical Valentine’s Day gifts – stuff such as a bushel of tulips, jewels and gems, and cards with kisses on them – which are all fancy but impersonal. For his friend-who-is-a-girl, the boy would rather give the last cinnamon bun that he has or the jammy side of his peanut butter and jelly sandwich, or the plastic ring that came out of the gumball machine that matches the colour of her shoelaces. For her, he would rather share his lucky rock that helps him at hopscotch or the location of his favorite hiding spot in the hollow of a tree, because, after all, he likes his friend not just on Valentine’s Day, but every single day of the week and year. This Is Not a Valentine is a truly heartwarming and funny book that captures first declarations of love that are simple, pure, and sincere. Grades K-2
I Yoga You by Genevieve Santos
I Yoga You is delightful board book that teaches little kids how to say ‘I love you’ through a series of yoga poses. From morning to night, parents instill values of mindfulness and love for each other by getting their little ones to take part in their daily activities, like watering the plants, or doing the sun salutations. In doing so, kids learn different yoga poses such as the mountain pose, the tree pose, and more. Families move through their mindful day together as little ones learn a new way to say “I love you,” reveling in quiet daily moments that shine with energy, delight, and surprises. Grades Preschool